Vintage Pen Condition Scale
|Our Condition Scale||
|Is it in working order? All vintage pens go through our workshop prior to dispatch and their filling systems are fully serviced. We therefore expect them to work and each carries our normal 12 month service warranty|
|Why is condition important? A pen's condition largely determines its attractiveness to collectors and its price. Condition is very important. We have developed this grading scale over the last 20 years to provide a rational and objective guide to a pen's condition|
|The description of each pen for sale contains a condition grade (for example B/1m or A2/1b). This describes both the pen and the nib|
|A1 - Mint (uninked)||Shows no signs of use - possibly new old stock - mainly modern limited editions|
|A2 - Unused (Inked)||Shows no sign of use other than having been dipped or filled with ink - this is usually the top condition grade possible for vintage pens as we test the filling system and the nib as part of the service|
|B - Excellent||All parts original and showing only very slight signs of use: slight surface scratching; very minor discoloration or brassing; crisp imprints; no significant dings.
Most of our vintage pens fall into this category as being excellent, collectible examples which are also suitable for everyday use
|C - Fine||All parts original: some discoloration and brassing; light or worn imprints; small dings to metal or scratching on plastic. Unless very rare, we would not normally advertise a pen in this grade.
A combination of discoloration and brassing, possibly a worn imprint or maybe other degradation of the material means that pens in this condition are seldom desirable
|D - Fair||Some parts possibly not original; significant brassing/discoloration; very worn imprints; dings and scratches. Maybe a good writing pen or probably one to consign to the part bins!|
|We guarantee that any pen we sell has no cracking or hairlines - whether repaired or not - unless we have described this in the pen's description.
Many pens (eg a Parker Duofold in mandarin yellow) might be excellent everyday writing pens even with a hairline crack - but we would describe this in the pen's description and price it accordingly.
|Nib Grade and Style:||Nib condition - is it okay for daily writing?|
|f - Fine
m - Medium
b - broad
s - Stub
obl - Oblique
|1 - Nib is in excellent condition with no damage to tines or iridium
2 - Nib is useable with no damage to tines, some use evident on iridium
3 - Nib is useable but with some distortion to tines or significant iridium wear
4 - Nib has damaged tines or damaged iridium or hairline crack - can be repaired
5 - Nib is damaged beyond repair or is not useable
We will also note whether the nib is 'correct' for the pen
This will include details of:
- any engraving: the initials or text of the engraving are given, eg ‘STG’ or ‘Presented to Adam Smith, Jan 1919’.
- degree of oxidation on hard rubber pens
- any specific damage, hairline cap lip splits etc.
B/1f would indicate a pen which has been used but is in good collectible condition and which is fitted with a fine grade nib in excellent shape